by Adrian Dorofte and Adrian Andronic
e-mail: mercedesbenzblog@gmail.com

Blue Efficiency Power: Mercedes-Benz presents the new Atego

The Euro VI legislation that will soon go into effect in Europe requires manufacturers to come up with completely new vehicle concepts. With the Mercedes-Benz Atego that was presented today in Wörth for light and medium-duty distribution transportation, Mercedes-Benz Trucks is already concluding its product offensive nine months before the new emissions standard goes into effect. The offensive started in 2011, when the new Actros was launched for Euro VI-compliant long-distance haulage. It was followed in 2012 by the Antos for heavy-duty distribution transportation and in January 2013 by the Arocs for construction site applications. The fact that Mercedes-Benz has become Europe’s first manufacturer to offer Euro VI-compliant vehicles in all three segments - light, medium, and heavy-duty distribution - underscores the brand’s leading position when it comes to truck technology.

Total cost of ownership reaches benchmark level

The Atego has been the market leader in the medium-duty truck segment for many years now, thanks to its characteristic attributes of high quality and reliability, low repair and maintenance costs, and extreme durability. The Atego now strengthens its top position with the help of numerous new features for the powertrain, the vehicle frame, and the cab. To make this possible, around € 300 million was spent to develop and produce the new vehicle. Stefan Buchner, Head of Mercedes-Benz Trucks, says, “The Atego is the top dog in the light and medium-duty distribution segment. It is undefeated when it comes to total cost of ownership. That’s why our development goal for the new Atego was quite simple: We wanted to make the best distribution truck even better. And that’s exactly what we did.”

The new Atego features SCR-based BlueTec engines that reduce diesel consumption by up to five percent, despite the truck’s compliance with Euro VI. Even more impressive, the consumption of AdBlue was even cut in half. Maintenance costs have been substantially reduced as well, because the Atego has to be serviced less often than any other vehicle in its segment.

Market leader in the important distribution segment of trucks weighing 6.5 to 16 tons GVW

The foundation for the new Atego was laid by the LK (or “light class”) series of the mid-1980s. The vehicle’s distinctive feature was its versatile modular system, including a new, standardized cab. The vehicle’s look was based on that of the heavy-duty truck of the time. The LK was succeeded by the Atego series, which was presented in 1998. Next to the heavy-duty Actros, the Atego is the most-produced Mercedes-Benz truck series in history, with a total output of around 340,000 units. Moreover, the Atego produced at the Wörth plant has been the market leader in Europe’s light and medium-duty distribution segments for decades. Depending on economic developments, this market fluctuates between 50,000 and 100,000 units per year. In 2012, more than one third of the trucks weighing between 6.5 and 16 tons GVW that were sold in Europe were Ategos. In Germany, the Atego even accounted for almost half of these trucks.

Blue Efficiency Power, an automated transmission, and a new design

The new, Euro VI-compliant Atego is equipped with the new Medium Duty Engine Generation. This all-new engine platform uses SCR systems, exhaust gas recirculation, and diesel particulate filters. The Blue Efficiency Power engines come in seven variants, with outputs ranging from 115 kW (156 hp) to 220 kW (299 hp).

Additional new highlights include the ESP system and the automated transmissions, that is available as standard equipment in Germany, as well as the thoroughly updated interior. The reengineered interior include a clear graphic display in the central instrument panel, a standard-fitted multifunctional steering wheel, and redesigned seats. In terms of their design and functionality, these features are aligned with those of the Actros, Antos, and Arocs series. The new Atego’s exterior also fits in perfectly with the heavy-duty trucks’ design language.

Extreme diversity of variants and exemplary customer support

Another typical feature of the Atego is its wide range of variants, which is essential for the highly specialized market of distribution vehicles. The Atego offers an incredible variety of vehicles that leaves almost no wish unfulfilled, encompassing 42 basic designs ex works as well as numerous wheelbase lengths, four cabs in three lengths, and several all-wheel-drive variants.

In addition, the services offered for the vehicle are optimized down to the last detail. The benefits range from quick spare parts availability to a service network that is exemplary for all of Europe, customized service offers, and driver training courses for optimizing fuel efficiency. The customers are clearly rewarding the company for these benefits, as one out of every two Ategos was delivered with a CharterWay service product last year.

Credits: Daimler AG

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